“Anything worth doing, is worth doing right.” ― Hunter S. Thompson
That has been my mantra for this summer of exploration and growth. I want to break down sort of what has been going on since the last time that I posted about my adventures in NOLA.
Classes: Since the last time I posted an update about my academic life, I have taken three quizzes, one exam, one midterm; I have completed one group paper (group papers are…interesting) and two group presentations. These projects have been absolutely phenomenal. Will you allow me to gush?—I’ll take that as a yes.
Comparative Health Systems (GHSD 6010)
Phenomenal class! We used case studies to analyze the health systems in St. Lucia, Bolivia, Armenia, and a fictional country: Bekaraljis. We discussed the corporate responsibility of ‘Big Pharma’ (specifically: Merck). One major aspect of this class has been a group project; we were told to analyze a health system — broad, I know! I find the global mental health discourse fascinating, and so my group aimed to answer the question of how mental healthcare is delivered in Nigeria.
We addressed the global burden of disease, Nigeria’s health care system, health care reform legislation, traditional medical practices, a case study (on Brain Fatigue Syndrome — a culture-bound syndrome in Nigeria), and an analysis (via the World Bank Control Knobs) of Nigeria’s health care system. We closed our presentation with recommendations for change.
Feel free to check out the presentation.
Social & Behavioral Aspects of Global Health (GCHB 6030)
It’s so interesting to look at disease in a framework that does not emphasize the biological basis of disease. The most interesting aspects, so far, of this course have been (1) how public health organizations market their message and (2) that racism is a risk factor for disease.
I’ve been geeking out over many public health non-profit organization’s advertisements that were related to the World Cup. For example: the CDC had a nifty poster, “Don’t Let Disease Score at the World Cup.” It has been extremely interesting to learn about the techniques / methods used to create a social marketing campaign.
For this class, I’ve been working with a group of ladies; we wrote a paper in which we identified risk factors (on the individual, interpersonal, community, and society level of the SEM model) for lack of cervical cancer screening in the Asian American population in California.
About thirty pages of material. Yikes! I was really glad that it was a collaborative paper. We also designed an intervention to increase cervical cancer screening rates in the young Asian American population of California. Feel free to check out this presentation as well.
Recently, I purchased some amazing Stabilo pens — yes, I am ‘that’ medical student.
The only fun part of studying for finals this week is the colorful array of pens.
Adventures: Now that I am no longer afraid of New Orleans — about time, right? — it’s time for some adventures in the city. So far…I’ve become acquainted with a few restaurants / eateries. I’ve visited Avenue Cafe (off of St. Charles), Daisy Dukes (French Quarter), Sucre (Magazine Street), La Thai Uptown (Prytania), Sukho Thai (Magazine Street), Nile (Magazine Street), Ignatius (Magazine Street), Honey Loaf (Canal Street), Rum House (Magazine Street), Jung’s Golden Dragon (Magazine), Angelleto’s (South Robertson), Houston’s (St. Charles), District Donuts (Magazine Street), and Cafe Du Monde (French Quarter). Each adventure on Magazine Street requires parallel parking–yuck. I think that I am getting better. Today I parallel parked by myself. I know this is simple for people who have to parallel park on a regular basis, but I’m extremely proud each time that I manage not to damage my car.
I went to Nile, an Egyptian restaurant, with a few members of my Comparative Health Systems course as well as a couple of other friends from the School of Public Health. It was such an amazing time. The food was splendid. The conversation was effortless and engaging. The more that I get to know the individuals in my classes, the happier I am that I am in New Orleans–the more I feel as though Tulane is the right place for me.
I’m looking forward to exploring New Orleans once exams are often–just a few more days!
Visitors: Two of my favorite humans (hey Tola; hey Minerva!) visited yesterday and it was so amazing to see old friends. It’s really weird albeit refreshing to think about how we are extremely unlikely to ever hang out again in the residential colleges or in the dining hall or in a cramped, small dorm room. Tola, Minerva, Brittani, and I went to Ignatius for a Creole/Cajun meal (yes, this means gator was served). We returned to my apartment (Brittani left; Emi arrived) and the night devolved into ice cream (for me), wine, and gossip. #lifeisgood
Clean Eating: I told one of my dear friends, Alicia, over Skype that clean eating has become easier over time. Just to share: here are some of the most recent meals that I have made.
(1) Mango Chutney Glazed Chicken + Potato & Pea Curry Stew
(2) Gluten Free Baked Pancake Cup — Diced Apples + Peanut Butter & Agave
(3) Lettuce Wraps — Ground Chicken or Ground Turkey + Mango Chutney
(4) Skillet Potatoes + Curried Vegetables
(5) Garlic Chicken + Brown Rice Nasoya Eggrolls
(6) Pesto Flatbread Pizza – Topped with Tomatoes, ‘Veggie Cheese’, and Onions
(7) Burrito in a Bowl — Brown Rice + Black Beans + Grilled Chicken
(8) Pita Pockets — Whole Wheat Pita + Hummus (Edamame or Chickpea) + Grilled Chicken
As I tinker in the kitchen, I’ll share the culinary experiments that are delicious. If you have recipe recommendations, let me know in the comment box below. As always, I love to hear from you guys!